Sly and the Family Stone memorably sang a song saying ‘Everybody is a star’. As a sweeping generalisation, it could come across as contentious, but there again, when a context is provided, the statement could make a lot of sense.

Everyone does want to be seen and heard on some level and to be acknowledged for unique personal attributes. We are humans and there are subcultures within our species. Time and space could be allocated to identification with those layers, but we want to be known as our selves, essentially.

Journeying on our personal paths, there are moments when others want us to stand up and be counted as part of one subdivision or another. Those of us who happen to live our lives as members of minority or marginalised groups often find ourselves under pressure to comply with this tendency.

Sometimes, the mindset that comes as a result of the aforementioned type of compliance can be useful in helping the rest of our species to understand what it means to be human. Maybe this is what Miles Davis was referring to when he once said that Black musicians have attitude.

In recent times however, it is interesting to observe approaches taken by folks who have already been recognised for their individuality, wanting to take on roles as spokespersons for others.

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